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Added responsibility has always worked for me: Virat Kohli

By Nilabh Aole -

It's a well-known fact that Virat Kohli was very much surprised when he was handed over the Test captaincy but he has acknowledged that he is now well-prepared to take up the captaincy of the Indian team in limited-overs cricket as he has had some experience of leading the side in the international arena.

After MS Dhoni's decision to step down as India's skipper in ODIs and T20Is, Kohli was the obvious choice for leading the side for the upcoming England series, beginning 15 January.

While talking to BCCI.TV, Virat compared the scenarios in which he had received the captaincy baton, he said, "Test captaincy I think I was told a day before the Adelaide Test that MS is not going to play the game and I was going to be captaining. It was quite surprising. I didn't expect it at all. In my head, I was still finding my feet in Test cricket as a batsman. But the responsibility worked beautifully for me." 

Since the time Kohli has got the position of the skipper, he has been going through a purple patch both as a captain and as a player. Commenting on that, he said, "It (captaincy in Tests) took a bit of time to process and understand how it is done. Yes, I would say the ODI and T20 captaincy has been something that I have tried to learn along the lines a lot more. At the same time, I feel a lot more confident taking it up and starting it up straightaway because of the kind of cricket I have played in the shorter formats and what I have learned."

He further elaborated, "I have been preparing in my own head, MS has been speaking to me about strategies, about how situations need to be approached. Because I think he also understood it is very important to guide me, teach me, knowing the legacy he has set up. It is very important for the person who is coming to take it forward and not be in a state of confusion."

Kohli accepted that whenever he has got some responsibility, he got tempted to push himself more and that brings the best out of him. He said: "Added responsibility has always worked for me in a sense that there is no room left to be complacent. You have no room to relax. That is why even in IPL, it is very easy to throw my wicket after 60 and 70s but the fact that I push myself after that is because I understand as a captain of the team, I need to set an example and need to first make that kind of effort before asking the team members to do it."

However, Kohli is familiar to the fact that leadership in limited overs is way different from Test cricket. He also praised Dhoni for his brilliant contribution. He said, "Captaincy in Test cricket still gives you the opportunity to come back into the game. I saw an Allan Border interview where he spoke about the leadership of Ricky Ponting. He mentioned that Ponting was able to maintain that consistency rate over such a long period time in a format that doesn't allow you to come back very often." 

Kohli concluded, "I think I would be able to execute the plans with much more conviction than the time I started off with Test captaincy."

Nilabh Aole

I am genuine cricket fan, who respect the game as well